Beaver Falls, PA - It is once again Geneva College′s turn to host the annual Penn-Ohio high school football all-star game. This year, Geneva will literally roll out its new carpet for the event. Prior to the 7:30 p.m. kickoff on June 29th, Geneva College will officially unveil its new turf to the public. In a special ceremony scheduled before the game, Geneva College and Beaver Falls High School will recognize those who had a hand in helping to finalize the first phase of Geneva′s stadium renovation project.
Geneva President Dr. Ken Smith, along with Beaver Falls superintendent Dr. Donna Nugent, will address the crowd and help introduce several dignitaries who will be on hand for the ceremony. Scheduled to appear, among others, are representatives from the Pittsburgh Steelers. The National Football League played a big role in helping to finance the project with the help of the Steelers organization.
Geneva′s stadium renovation project, which also included new visitor bleachers this year, is far from complete. Reeves Stadium will continue its overhaul after the 2007 football season with new home stands, new restrooms, new concession stands and a new press box. The complete renovation project is to be completed prior to the kickoff of the 2008 season.
"We are ecstatic with our new playing surface," said Geneva head coach and athletic director Geno DeMarco. "The Penn-Ohio game has such a great tradition in this area and I couldn't think of a better setting to unveil our new field. We have had so many Geneva guys play in this game over the years and we are so happy to once again be able to host this outstanding event."
Geneva′s football team will have to wait until mid-September to play its first game on the new surface. The Golden Tornadoes open the 2007 campaign with three straight road games before returning to Reeves Stadium for a date with Bethany College on September 22nd.
The new synthetic turf field was made possible, in part, by a $200,000 grant from the Pittsburgh Steelers, the National Football League Players Association and the NFL′s Grassroots program. The Grassroots program is a partnership between the NFL Youth Football Fund and Local Initiatives Support Cooperation (LISC), the nation′s leading community development support organization.
Since 1998, the Grassroots program has provided more than $17 million to help community organizations build, or rebuild, 155 youth fields in more than 40 cities in NFL markets, typically where funding sources are few and far between. The program identifies local, nonprofit, neighborhood-based agencies which have an interest in building or refurbishing community football fields. Through the program, local agencies are provided with the necessary financing and technical assistance to improve the quality and safety of their fields in their neighborhoods.
Geneva College, a reformed Christian liberal arts school founded in 1848, prepares students to serve Christ in all areas of society: work, family and the church. Geneva is a founding member of the Council of Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU).